Sunday’s 153rd edition of the $1 million Queen’s Plate features a 14-horse field and morning line favorite Strait of Dover shoots for a four-bagger.
#4 Strait of Dover (3-1) stretched out successfully in a facile Marine tally May 12 and should be on or near tepid splits from the outset. Justin Stein rides him well and he clearly enjoys the Woodbine surface. His sire English Channel was a long distance turf specialist so ten furlongs could be within his grasp.
#7 Golden Ridge (6-1) is my value top. The lightly raced, improving colt is bred all over to adore this longer journey and has enough positional speed to keep the leaders in his sights.
#8 Ultimate Destiny (20-1) has Pleasant Tap on the bottom of his pedigree and should continue to improve with added distance and experience. His last two numbers were his best yet and a tactical trip at square odds is anticipated.
#1 River Rush (4-1) is on the upswing and packs a nice late kick. He gets his stamina from dam sire Lemon Drop Kid and will try to get involved late.
#14 Irish Mission (10-1) lost her first six races but the rapidly improving sort exits back-to-back local wins including the Woodbine Oaks. She looms a pace player at the very least and can compete here with another forward move. Her late pace numbers are on the low side so she could prove vulnerable in the lane.
#10 Dixie Strike (8-1) was a hot commodity in the Woodbine Oaks but ended up a disappointing 5th that day. She smartly captured the G3 Selene on May 13 and might be best up to a mile and a sixteenth. She adds blinkers for this.
#5 Classic Bryce (12-1) hit the board in his last three local stakes route attempts and can contend for a minor award in this spot.
#6 Wilcox (20-1) has only raced twice and owns a nice pedigree (Giant’s Causeway-Seeking the Gold). He graduated from post 14 on the turf here last out and moves back to synthetic for trainer Josie Carroll.
Trainer Roger Attfield seeks his 9th Queen’s Plate win with #9 Colleen’s Sailor (15-1). The sophomore son of Northern Afleet exits a local nine furlong entry level tally but needs to earn better numbers to compete here.
#3 Macho Whiskey (15-1) finished 5th and last in his lone local route attempt May 27 but was only beaten a length and a half. He ran well in a pair of sprints before that and figures to push the pace under Emma-Jayne Wilson.
#12 Big Creek (10-1) will take some action due to connections (Dominguez-Pletcher). He chased and weakened to 4th in the Plate Trial, and the son of Indian Charlie might run out of gas at ten furlongs.
#2 Peyton (20-1) finished 5th in the Plate Trial last time. He was 5th in his other stakes try as well and might need easier company and less ground. Julien Leparoux rides.
Late running sprinter #11 Making Amends (20-1) flattened out in the nine panel Plate Trial and does not figure to fare much better in this salty spot.
#13 Washington Dash (50-1) is still a maiden after three tries. He ran better over the Arlington weeds June 10 but figures to fail this class test.
$20 to win #7
$2 to win #8
$2 Exacta 7/1-4-8 ($6)
$2 Exacta 1-4-8/7 ($6)
$1 Trifecta Key 1-4-7/1-4-7/8 ($6)